20 Ways to Garden Without a Backyard

Many people would love to garden if they only had the space. City dwellers and apartment residents, take heart! You CAN garden, even if you don’t have a backyard. Check out these creative gardening ideas that require zero square feet of outdoor space.

  1. Plant Pockets

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    Plant Pockets

    It’s much easier than it looks to make these one-of-a-kind wall planters. All you need is air-dry clay, a rolling pin, and a custom pattern to use as a guide for cutting out the design. Once everything sets, you can sand down the clay and paint the interior (or the exterior) the color of your choice using craft paint. Fill the pockets with succulents or herbs, and display your colorful creation on any wall.


    Related: 6 Easy DIY Projects—No Tools Required

    designlovefest.com

  2. Desk Zen

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    Desk Zen

    Bring a little life to your desk by dedicating one section of an acrylic desktop organizer as a mini terrarium. Just plant some small succulents in an inch or two of cactus potting mix, then add an array of colorful stones or decorative accents.

    Related: The 10 Toughest Houseplants to Keep Alive

    abeautifulmess.com

  3. Natural Accents

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    Natural Accents

    If you’re ready for a bigger project—one that will produce a truly unique piece of decor—give this terrarium side table a try. Constructed of plexiglass and painted wood, it promises be a conversation piece at your next gathering. Have a black thumb? No worries. You can fill it with faux plantings for the ultimate in low-maintenance greenery.

    Related: 10 Reasons You Don’t Need a Green Thumb to Have a Beautiful Garden

    abeautifulmess.com

  4. Wonder Wall

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    Wonder Wall

    Here's an indoor gardening project that's almost as simple as hanging a painting. Create your own living wall by mounting a planter (like the Wally One from Woolly Pocket, shown here) above your fireplace, or anywhere else in your home. Fill the planter with kitchen herbs or a range of wild succulents for pretty greenery you can enjoy year-round.


    Related: 7 Everyday Objects You Never Thought to Hang

    woollypocket.com

  5. Plant Pods

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    Plant Pods

    Instead of potting your plants, try kokedama—a style of Japanese bonsai where you secure a plant's roots in a ball of soil and moss held together by an intricate web of string. Once you have the balance right and the roots firmly in place, you can string these mossy balls from the ceiling for a touch of indoor greenery that’s perfect for a steamy bathroom with limited counter space.


    Related: 15 Plants Perfect for Hanging Baskets

    instructables.com via chanchala.singh.58

  6. Picture Perfect

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    Picture Perfect

    If you have a handful of old, lightweight glass frames lying around the house that you don’t know what to do with, grab a hot-glue gun, white paint, and white duct tape to turn them into a homey terrarium. Paint the frames and let them dry, then use the tape and glue to secure the glass in place. Pop your plants inside, and position the terrarium in a sunny spot for the ultimate mini greenhouse.


    Related: 10 Artful Uses for Old Frames

    thewickerhouse.blogspot.com

  7. Drawer Decor

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    Drawer Decor

    Combine an old dresser drawer and a tray table to create a repurposed planter that's ripe for display anywhere in the home. Attach the two pieces together with wood glue to hold the drawer sturdily in place. Finish with a fresh coat of paint and some attractive hardware, then arrange a few of your favorite potted plants in the drawer for a charming touch of green. 


    Related: 10 New Uses for Old Dressers

    happytogetherbyjess.com

  8. Darling Decanter

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    Darling Decanter

    Brew up a little charm with this simple yet stunning terrarium idea. All you need for a basic display is an old coffee carafe, a few mini air plants, and white sand, but you can enhance the design with all-natural extras like moss and river rock. The combination of low-maintenance greenery and seasonal coziness makes this a lovely accent for any space.


    Related: 10 Weirdly Awesome New Uses for Old Appliances

    acharmingproject.com

  9. Display Case

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    Display Case

    Turn your coffee table into a living, breathing work of art by repurposing an old glass cabinet door and using it as the framework for an eclectic terrarium. Once the structure is built, lay out your plants and root them in a mixture of soil and charcoal. You’ll have to water them regularly, but the glass top that anchors this design is easy to remove.


    Related: 16 Designs for a Low-Cost DIY Coffee Table

    instructables.com via Paige Russell

  10. Wine Time

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    Wine Time

    With a bit of ingenuity, empty wine bottles can easily be turned into small indoor planters. Using a homemade wooden jig and a kitchen torch, cut the glass bottle into two sections and then invert the neck into the bottle's base, which will hold the water. Buff out any sharp edges with sandpaper before layering your planter with rocks and potting soil to give the homespun assemblage a rustic vibe.


    Related: 12 Tiny Gardens You Can Grow on a Tabletop

    instructables.com via acoens

  11. Growing in Glass

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    Growing in Glass

    A little bit of chalk paint and a few mason jars can turn a white windowsill into a wonderful home for indoor greenery. Plant roots need drainage, though, which mason jars don't naturally have, so be sure to add some gravel to the bottom before seeding.

    Related: 8 Things to Know Before You Set Foot in a Plant Store

    chatfieldcourt.com

  12. Rooted in Water

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    Rooted in Water

    Some plants will grow happily in nothing more than a glass of water—and you should take advantage of that. Sweet potato vine, coleus, and spiderwort are all good candidates for the water treatment. Just snip a cutting, drop it into a glass of water, and add a couple of drops of plant food every month. Set the glass containers on a table or anywhere else a little plant life could bring some cheer.

    Related: 20 Destinations for Plant Lovers Across America

    apieceofrainbow.com

  13. Insta-Shelf

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    Insta-Shelf

    Make the most of every inch of window space for growing plants with these suction-cup window shelves. Set in a prime location, seedlings and full-grown plants can bask in the best sunlight your place has to offer. It's an especially great setup for an easy-access kitchen herb garden.

    Related: 10 Ways to Grow Your Garden on the Internet

    amazon.com

  14. A Living Mobile

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    A Living Mobile

    You don’t need a backyard to garden—and with air plants, you don't even need soil. Crafting a living mobile by hanging air plants from a hoop is one of the most creative ways to display these incredible plants—especially if you’re running short on counter space.

    Related: Do These 8 Things and Never Pay for Plants Again

    etsy.com via GemsOfTheSoil

  15. Shine a Little Light

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    Shine a Little Light

    A solar terrarium provides a comforting glow in the evenings, whether you put it on your back porch or on your dining room table. All it takes to make it is a solar light, an empty glass lantern, succulents, double-sided tape, and river rocks. The project is easy enough for a DIY beginner and requires no special tools.

    Related: 11 Reasons Your Houseplants Are Dying

    eastcoastcreativeblog.com

  16. Quirky Curlicues

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    Quirky Curlicues

    Air plants, as the name implies, can live on air alone—with a little regular watering, that is. All you need to do is figure out how you want to display them. Here's a crafty idea that uses copper wire and plain old river rocks. So simple, yet so elegant.

    Related: The Best Places to Buy Plants Online

    gardentherapy.ca

  17. Teacup Garden

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    Teacup Garden

    You can repurpose almost any container as a DIY planter—including teacups. Succulents, moss, and small creeping plants are great candidates for teacup greenery. These tiny plants don’t require much water, so adding drainage holes in the bottom of the cup may not even be necessary. 

    Related: 12 Plants That Will Make Your Garden Smell Great

    theinspiredroom.net

  18. Power Lunch

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    Power Lunch

    You can grow your own sunflower or alfalfa sprouts in an upcycled salad container by adding soil and seeds and placing it in any sunny window. You could be garnishing your salads and sandwiches with delicious greens in as little as two weeks!

    Related: 12 Easy Herbs to Grow on Your Windowsill

    gardentherapy.ca

  19. Rain Room

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    Rain Room

    Create the feeling of a spa-like outdoor retreat by constructing a planter from a board, some chicken wire, and a roll of fiberglass screen, and suspending it from your bathroom ceiling. After feeding the roots through holes in the screen and adding a layer of soil, hang the finished product using gauge chain and metal hooks to inject a little jungle fever into your space. 


    Related: Tiny Bath? 8 Space-Smart Color Choices

    instructables.com via peachesandsalt

  20. Pretty Pots

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    Pretty Pots

    Create your own DIY herb display by mounting a variety of hanging pots on the wall. Once everything is attached, all you’ll need is a watering can to keep the plants hydrated, and scissors to snip your fresh, fragrant goodies whenever a recipe calls for them.


    Related: 10 Inventive DIY Vertical Gardens

    ikea.com

  21. Green With Envy

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    Green With Envy

    Don't miss out on the joys of gardening! These DIYs prove you don't need a grassy yard for stunning greenery. 

    bobvila.com

  22. See the House of the Week

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    Discover and admire beautiful and innovative home architecture, from grand Victorians to quaint cabins and all the styles in between. Take a look at the latest images and inspiration!